Are you new in the teaching profession and looking for brilliant classroom management ideas for high school? Or maybe you’ve been teaching for many years already and want to refresh your classroom management strategies.
Do you dread those moments when the situation in the classroom gets out of control?
What do you do when a student suddenly tells a joke, and everybody reacts, which delays the lesson?
Going in front of teenagers can be enjoyable or a nightmare, too.
You can’t predict the moods of these bunch of teenagers, whether they’re super active or super lazy to move.
That’s the perk of being a high school teacher. But don’t worry because there are brilliant ways to deal with these types of learners.
Classroom Management is essential for learning to happen. Its scope covers discipline, setting up activities, classroom layout, monitoring, giving feedback, differentiation of classroom activities, and motivating learners.
Here is your Complete A-Z Guide to Classroom Management. I advise you try all of them and see the difference.
Ask them questions
If students are involved in class discussions, they will feel loved and valued. Be sure to include all of your students throughout the term. Students feel bad when they were not called to answer even once.
Teenagers like to be heard, so allow them to share what they think or think by throwing them the right questions.
Asking the right question is a brilliant idea to assess the progress of your students.
Sometimes teachers are afraid to be close to their students, thinking they will not be respected. However, you can be firm and loving to them without compromising respect.
Create a positive classroom environment
If some learners feel bad because they got low, look into the problem, and extend help for them to improve. Make sure your body language is encouraging and use positive language to motivate them. Also, don’t forget to smile.
Decide on classroom rules
To maintain discipline in class, involve students in deciding on classroom rules. If you’re the only one who decides on the rules, there is a possibility that they will not comply with them.
But, if they help in crafting these rules, they will feel co-ownership and obey. In making classroom rules, avoid negative words like never or don’t. Instead, state the rules into something positive.
For example, don’t say, “Don’t be late.”, instead, use “Come to school early.” Another, don’t make rules very complicated. Overall, make them specific, short, positive, and realistic.
Examples of unrealistic and harmful rules:
- Never question the teacher.
- Never move around the class.
- Sit silently and listen to the teacher at all times.
- Always put up your hands before answering and never call out answers.
Examples of realistic and positive rules:
- Listen and follow the teacher’s instructions.
- Respect everyone.
Sometimes, it’s challenging to elicit a response from the students, and the tendency of some teachers is to stop there and just give the answer.
How can you encourage your students to talk? When they are trying to express their ideas, a smile or a nod can make them more motivated to share. If they struggle to give the correct answer, you can give them verbal or non-verbal hints.
Focus on their positive behaviors
One principle of positive discipline is to catch your students doing good and praise them. This behavior strategy works well for students vying for the teachers’ attention. And, when you let them feel they are loved, they will love you for it.
One strategy teachers forget as one of the excellent classroom management ideas for high school is giving feedback. Feedback is the link that connects one activity to the other.
The pattern should be activity-feedback-activity-feedback. When there is no feedback, the students are left hanging, and it might cause uneasiness and uncertainty in them.
Feedback can help the learners to:
- correct their own mistakes
- check on their improvement
- know if their answer is correct
- share what they found difficult in the activity
Teachers can give feedback by:
- listening to students’ thoughts after an activity
- praising students
- eliciting answers from students
- letting the students correct their own errors
One reason why you need to monitor the activities is for you to help them. Not all students feel confident in asking for help from the teacher. If you move around and watch them in action, you can offer them support and encouragement.
This classroom technique is also called scaffolding, meaning you add extra efforts and activities to help them attain the lesson’s goals.
Instruct them clearly
Giving clear instructions before the students do activity is a classroom management concept that is sometimes overlooked by teachers. It is crucial to provide clear guidance to ensure a smooth flow of events. When giving directions, you may consider the following tips:
- Use simple language.
- If the activity involves something hard to explain, demonstrate.
- If the class is big, write the instructions on the board.
- Break down instructions into simple steps.
- Ask instruction-checking questions (ICQs).
- Use gestures.
Join the fun
Teenagers have their energy level recharged every day. They have silly thoughts and actions sometimes, so don’t forget to put yourself in their shoes and share the fun. Working with teenagers is like riding the roller coaster of their emotions. Don’t dampen the hour by those gloomy looks.
Know their names
The first thing you need to do at the beginning of the school year or the term is to memorize their names ASAP. Everybody loves to hear his or her own name. This shows that you are interested in them, too.
For them to open up their lives to you, it is also good to inspire them with your life.
Liven up the classroom
Teenagers have mood swings, and their energy level can sometimes be drained. If you notice that the class is bored, relate the topic to something they’re interested in or change the activity into a more exciting one. A joke or two can be handy during these times, so be sure you have some in your pocket.
You can not help the learners and assess their learning if you just stay in one place. During activities, try to move around and monitor the class.
This can also help soothe students who are trying to get your attention by being unruly in class.
If possible, it’s also good to set up seating arrangements where you and the students can easily move around.
Never use corporal punishments
Corporal punishments are already banned from the classroom because it gives more negative effects than positive ones.
Observe students’ learning styles
Students sometimes misbehave because the activity is not suited to their learning styles. I know it is impossible to cater to all your students’ learning styles.
However, it is better to know the learning styles of the majority of the students and prepare activities that suit these learning preferences. It is one of the excellent classroom management ideas for your high school class.
Pair and group works will help
Pair and group work give opportunities for learners to interact with each other. In a language class, they can be a good start to practice the target language. Your students can learn from each other, too.
Quit treating them like kids
Teenagers don’t like to be treated as kids anymore. They want to have more freedom to control their situations.
Let them work independently or learn from each other.
They feel good when they discover things by themselves and take responsibility for their own action. Just the right amount of guidance from you will do.
Rewarding is a classroom strategy that motivates learners to complete an activity with better outputs. However, be careful in giving rewards.
You don’t want to overemphasize it and spend your own money on material rewards. Therefore, – is still better for students to be intrinsically rather than extrinsically motivated to excel in their studies.
Shouting at all times will not help
Maybe you want to get their attention by shouting, but it can also be disturbing to some students who are used to it. Be calm and practice maximum tolerance.
Teach with consistency
Your students will know if you’re not prepared for class, and when they feel there are no defined goals for the hour, they will become restless.
So, don’t go to class unprepared. You should always have a plan on paper or in mind. A well-prepared activity is an excellent way to keep the learners busy, and when they are working, they don’t have the time to cause trouble in class.
Teaching with consistency is perhaps one of the best classroom management ideas for your high school class. If you plan very well your activities, your students maximize their learning and do not have the time for unnecessary activities.
Use language classroom
Language classroom refers to words or expressions that can easily be understood by the learners. Use language appropriate to their level. Another, use expressions that are familiar to them.
Vary your classroom activities
You know that teenagers cannot sit for too long, listening to lectures. That’s why it is essential to think of varied activities to keep them energized and motivated.
If you cannot avoid giving lectures, be sure to put other activities in between. For example, in the middle of the lecture, you can ask true/false questions and let them stand or raise their hands if the statement is true.
Using authentic materials can also be a strategy to divert from the usual handbook materials.
Wrap up with a positive note
End your class with something positive or something they will forward to in the next session. Tell them what they need to work on and how they have improved. The best reward for them is knowing they have learned something that day.
Go the eXtra mile
It’s good to read other resources on strategies to manage your high school classroom. The web is full of resources on classroom management. Don’t also hesitate to ask for help from your colleagues.
Your smile means a lot
Spread love and warmth in the classroom with your smile. It means a lot to the learners.
Zest up with games
High school learners are active learners, and games can be a great way to let them learn and have fun at the same time. There are many inspirations from the internet on exciting games for your classroom. Some of the games I used in my class are:
- Hangman – Based on the classic word game, Hangman, let the students guess the word being asked. This is perfect for reviewing terms or presenting new vocabulary.
- Board Games – Board games can be an exciting speaking activity in a language class. It is patterned from the game “Snakes and Ladders.” You can download my sample board game for a grammar lesson.
- Bingo – Prepare a BINGO card for your students with 5 columns and 5 rows. Write answers on the board and let them fill their boxes with some of these words. As you give the questions, they will mark the answer on their cards. The first one who forms a straight or diagonal line wins. This can be an excellent way to review them after a unit.
If you’ve tried all these classroom management ideas for your high school language class, you’re on your way to a fantastic learning experience with your students. Happy teaching!
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